It’s time to get excited and prepare for your new companion
Once you’ve committed to adopting a puppy, you’ll be wishing the days away, but this is the perfect time to prepare yourself, your family, and your home for when the big day comes.
Preparing Yourself for a New Puppy
Before committing to adding a puppy to your family, you will probably have done your research about the breed and what you can expect from a new pup, but there’s not such thing as too much research. Take a look through our previous blog posts about puppy training, and ask questions to people you know who have experienced taking care of a new puppy first-hand.
You may also want to consider taking a few days off work for when your new puppy arrives. Young puppies need constant supervision, especially during their first few days with you in a new environment, and you can expect to be woken up several times in the night while he gets used to toilet training and sleeping without his mum and litter-mates.
Preparing Your Family for a New Puppy
If you have young children in the house, it’s important to talk to them about how they should treat and behave around the new puppy. A puppy is not a toy and should be handled carefully. He is likely to be confused and a little frightened during the first few days as everything is very overwhelming, and he may need to sleep more than you think. Loud noises and wild behaviour could spook him, so remind the children to be calm and quiet.
Children and other family members should also be aware of what foods and items are dangerous for puppies; making a list and putting it in the kitchen for all to see can be useful. Things like grapes and chocolate are not obvious risks to those who haven’t owned a dog before, but can be seriously poisonous if eaten by your pup.
Preparing your Home for a New Puppy
Puppies love to explore the world with their mouths, meaning they will chew just about anything that comes their way. They’ll grow out of this eventually with the right training (and plenty of ‘allowed’ chew toys to distract them), but for the first few months you need to be very careful about what you leave lying around.
Before you bring your puppy home, make sure any wires and cords are hidden or taped away, and any precious items are out of harm’s way.
Depending on the layout of your home and where your puppy will be sleeping (will he have a bed in a secure area/room or will he be crate trained?), you may want to consider dividing up your home using baby gates or puppy pens. This can help you keep an eye on your puppy and know that he is safe in certain areas. It also helps when bringing your puppy home initially, as it is recommended that you introduce him slowly to help him adjust.
If you live far from where you are picking your puppy up from, you will need to register with your own vet before the puppy arrives. It’s always good to know you’re covered should anything happen during the first few days, and you’ll need to book their 10 week vaccinations there too.
If you’re thinking of getting pet insurance, you can sign up for this to start from the day you pick your puppy up too.
You may also want to think about who will look after your puppy when you’re not around. Once your puppy is old enough and vaccinated they can be enrolled in day care. It’s best to research this in advance to make sure you have a place for your puppy to go that makes you feel comfortable and where they will feel safe.
Depending on where you pick your puppy up from, you may be given a ‘puppy pack’ with a bag of the puppy’s current food and other items. It’s best to check this, but if not, make sure you have the basics covered:
- A bag of puppy food
- Food & water bowls
- A collar or harness
- A lead
- A bed or crate with comfy blankets
- Plenty of puppy safe toys
- Puppy safe treats for training
Best of luck with your new puppy! It will be a tiring but rewarding few weeks, but your new family member will soon fit right in.